Seems like the Royal Mint is pushing into historic coins and they’ve certainly gone in with style. A half-millennia old Sovereign of Henry VII with a opening bid of £950,000 is a sign of intent. An absolutely gorgeous coin, of course, we’ve often wondered why the mint doesn’t tap more into this genre for new releases, like the Royal Dutch Mint does with its restrikes. Amazing to think this 40 mm diameter, 15.3 gram, 0.995 gold coin was struck by essentially the same mint..
The Royal Mint’s historic coin experts have sourced a Type 2 Henry VII Sovereign, one of a select few in the world that are not held by a museum. The Henry VII Fine Gold Sovereign of Twenty Shillings is the earliest gold Sovereign a collector can own and there are only two examples in private ownership, making it a rare and historic addition to a collection. Struck more than 500 years ago, this exceptionally rare coin was created to assert the authority of the first Tudor king of England through its splendour and impressive weight and size. Bids will open at £950,000 for the sought-after coin.
Famous for making new coins, The Royal Mint successfully expanded into the sale of rare, historic coins two years ago. The company now helps customers track down rare examples to add to their collection, and authenticate coins on the secondary market using their unique experience in British coinage.
Rebecca Morgan, Divisional Director of Collector Services, comments: “We are delighted to have acquired such a rare coin which traces its history to the first Tudor king. The survival rate of these gold coins is miniscule, and this particular coin is the earliest example of a gold Sovereign that a collector can own. Our experts have checked and validated the coin, and there are just two left in private ownership – making this an incredibly exciting addition to a collection.
Rebecca continues: “The Royal Mint was originally based at The Tower of London, and this coin would have been hand struck on ‘Mint Street’ – which still stands today. What makes this coin even more fascinating is that we can trace its ownership back to the 1800’s. One notable owner of the coin was the world-renowned banker J. P. Morgan, who owned the coin until his death in 1913 with subsequent sale in 1915.
“We have seen many customers buying historic coins to bring purpose to their collection, either as an investment for the future or an heirloom to pass onto the next generation. Our Collector Services division is growing year on year, and with 1,100 years of expertise, the team here at The Royal Mint can help enrich and enhance any coin collection. We set the record for the sale of a British historic coin at £1 million last year – so who knows, perhaps this might beat the record.”
The gold Sovereign of Twenty Shillings was first introduced in the reign of the first Tudor King, Henry VII (1485-1509) 1489 over 500 years ago. The coin depicts the crowned Tudor King seated on a wooden throne, in robes, holding an orb and sceptre, the reverse shows the quartered shield of England upon a Tudor rose. Henry VII started the Tudor dynasty and was determined to cement his position. He was the father on the infamous Henry VIII, and grandfather to Elizabeth I.
The coin was acquired by The Royal Mint’s Collector Services division, that offers a range of services including authentication and valuation, accessories to care for and display treasured pieces, an unrivalled coin finder service, providing the safety and security of 1100 years of knowledge to go out into the secondary market and find the missing pieces from collections, help to fill the gaps or find that one rare piece a customer has always wanted.
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